Q: My 9 year old daughter wants to change her last name
I was wondering if you could give advice as to my daughter is 9 years old her father has only seen her 2 times a year give or take and each time for less than 30 mins for each visit. She cries when she has to go with him so bad that she throws up she has been wanting her last name changed to mine i was never married to her father and she doesnt know anything about her family on that side except maybe a name her father doesnt contact her until the time he finally sees her which is around birthday or christmas for less than 30 mins he exspects her to call him and they have never had a bond she has more of a bond with me and my parents which are Harmons and i have had her since she was born so has her grandparents (harmons) which see her everyday. He will get mad at this but she finally has been realizing what a father is suppose to be and hes doesnt act like she exsist aswell as his family never act like she exsist. What are my options?
A: You can change her name, but you'll have to get permission from her father.
A: If you were not married to the father, and he never established paternity, and no court has granted him parental rights, then you have sole legal custody and get to decide who gets to spend time with your daughter, or to prohibit that contact. If visits with him are causing her physical distress, you could consider not allowing him to visit with her without you, or at all. If you refuse to allow contact, he might file with the court for parental rights. You could explain the situation to the court, and the court would decide what parenting time he should have and if it should be supervised. You also can file for child support. If you are not collecting child support now, you could tell him to approve the name change, or you will file for child support. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local family law attorney to advise you.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.